When Outlook only displays emails newer than 12 months, it means the “Cached Exchange Mode” is enabled and the Sync slider is set to “1 year.”
To fix the problem, open Outlook and go to “File” > “Account Settings” >“Account Name & Sync Settings.” Then drag the Sync slider to a date above 1 year.
If you’re using the most recent versions of Outlook, you may have experienced an issue where your inbox is only displaying emails newer than 12 months. That can be disruptive if you need to access an important email that was sent over a year ago. So, this blog post will highlight how to adjust the Sync slider in your Microsoft Outlook Account Settings to resolve this issue.
How to fix Outlook only displaying emails newer than 12 months:
- First, open Outlook.
- Click on the “File” tab.
- Click on “Account Settings.”
- Select “Account Name & Sync Settings” from the drop down list.
- If the slider is set to “1 year,” click and drag it to a longer duration.
- Click “Next.”
- When the success message appears, click “Done.”
Note: you will need to restart Outlook for these changes to take effect.
We’ve created a step-by-step walkthrough video that takes you through the steps above, which you can watch on our YouTube channel. Give it a watch here:
What causes Outlook to only display emails newer than 12 months?
When Outlook only displays emails newer than 12 months, it usually means that the “Cached Exchange Mode” is enabled. With Cached Exchange Mode enabled, you can only view emails newer than 12 months (by default), which is designed to improve Outlook’s performance.
After upgrading from an older version, like Outlook 2013, to the most recent versions of Outlook — or even after applying Office updates — the Cached Exchange Mode and the “Mail to keep offline” is set to the default setting of 12 months.
If your “Mail to keep offline” setting is set to 12 months (1 year) and you have old emails in your mailbox that are older than 12 months, those items will be located in your mailbox on the server. Therefore, if you can’t connect to the server, you may be unable to retrieve those emails.
You might also see the following messages:
- Currently displaying all messages newer than 3 days.
- Currently displaying all messages newer than 1 week.
- Currently displaying all messages newer than 1 month.
Please follow the step-by-step process outlined below to change the settings and allow you to access emails older than 12 months.
How to fix Outlook only displaying emails newer than 12 months (step-by-step):
- Open your Outlook desktop application.
- Click on the “File” tab in the top menu.
- You should now see “Account Information” in the “Info” tab. (1)
- Click on “Account Settings.” (2)
- Then select “Account Name and Sync Settings” from the dropdown menu. (3)
- Check the box next to “Use Cached Exchange Mode…“
- Drag the slider to the right until the value is above “1 year.”
- Then click the “Next” button.
Options for retaining emails in Outlook 2016:
In the May 3rd, 2016, update for Outlook 2016, additional options were added to the “Mail to keep offline” or “Sync slider” setting. The additional options are displayed below as “Outlook 2016 only.”
3 days (Outlook 2016 only)
1 week (Outlook 2016 only)
2 weeks (Outlook 2016 only)
1 year (default)
3 years (Outlook 2016 only)
5 years (Outlook 2016 only)
You will now see a notification saying that your account has been successfully updated. You will also need to restart Outlook for the changes to take effect.
- Click the “Done” button.
- Then restart Outlook.
How to fix Outlook only displaying emails newer than 12 months in Registry Editor
• For this method, you must install the April 3rd, 2018, update for Outlook 2016 (KB4018326)
• Be sure to make a backup of your keys in Regedit: Right-click the key > Backup.
Another way to change the “Mail to keep online” setting is in the Windows Registry. You can do that by adding or modifying the SyncWindowSetting and SyncWindowSettingDays values. Please continue reading to learn how.
Before you begin, please exit your Outlook application.
- Press the Windows key + R on your keypad to open your Run app.
- Then, type or select “regedit.exe” next to “Open.”
- Click the “OK” button.
- Alternatively, type “regedit” into your Windows search bar.
- If you can’t find the Windows search bar, press the Windows key + S on your keypad.
- Open the “Registry Editor” application.
- Type the following path into the search bar at the top of your Registry Editor:
- Right-click anywhere on the right side under the “Default” value.
- Hover over “New” then select “DWORD (32-bit) Value” from the menu.
- Type in “SyncWindowSetting” as the Value’s name.
- Create a new DWORD and name it “SyncWindowSettingDays” ensuring correct spelling.
- If you make a mistake, right-click the value and select “Rename.”
- Right-click the values and select “Modify.”
- For 3 months of emails, set:
- SyncWindowSetting to 3 (number of months)
- SyncWindowSettingDays to 0 (number of days)
|12 months (1 year)||12||0|
|24 months (2 years)||24||0|
|36 months (3 years)||36||0|
|60 months (5 years)||60||0|
|All (no limit)||0||0|
- Enter the value you want into the “Value data” box.
- Then click the “OK” button.
You can now close the Registry Editor and reopen your Outlook application.
Where are the emails older than 12 months stored in Outlook?
In Outlook, the “Mail to keep online” setting, also known as the “Sync slider,” will determine which emails to keep on your local device depending on the duration you select. By default, you will keep mail from the last 12 months on your local device.
Keeping mail on your local device means that you don’t need an internet connection to access them. But if you want to know precisely where your online and offline mails are stored, we have the answer.
- Your online mail older than 12 months is stored in your Archive folder.
- Your offline mail newer than 12 months is stored in your Outlook folder.
You can find your Outlook folder by pasting the following path into your File Explorer. Please ensure to replace “[username]” with your username in the C:\Users directory.
If you can’t locate your Outlook folder, please open your Outlook desktop application.
- Click on “File” in the top menu.
- You should now see “Account Information” in the “Info” tab. (1)
- Click on “Account Settings.” (2)
- Then select “Account Settings” again from the dropdown menu. (3)
- Click on the “Data Files” tab in Account Settings. (1)
- Select your Outlook email address. (2)
- Then select “Open File Location.” (3)
Your offline emails will be stored in an OST file with the same name as your email address. You may see a PST file, which is a Personal Storage Table. PST files cannot be read. However, you can convert a PST file into an OST file.
All your emails, including calendar items, contacts, and notes are stored in your Exchange mailbox, which is stored on the Microsoft Exchange servers. Exchange mailboxes are shared mailboxes, which are used by organizations.
Old mail can be stored in these locations: Archive or Mailbox Archive (Online Archive).
Archive folders come will all mailboxes and be found in the same viewing pane as the Inbox.
How to download email from the Archive folder
If you want to store your Archive offline on your PC, you can do that by downloading or “exporting” your Archive folder. Please follow the steps below to achieve that.
- First, open the Outlook app.
- Click on “File” in the top ribbon.
- Go to “Open & Export.”
- Then select “Import/Export.”
- Select “Export to a file” and click “Next.” (1)
- Select “Comma Separated Values” or “Outlook Data file” and click “Next.” (2)
Note: You can import a Comma Separated Values (CSV) file into Excel.
- Select the “Archive” from the folder list and click “Next.” (3)
- Click “Browse” to save your file to a location of your choice, then click “Next.” (4)
- Click the “Finish” button to complete the download / export.
What is the Mailbox Archive?
Mailbox Archive now comes as part of Microsoft 365 enterprise for accounts with large mailboxes. The Mailbox Archive is like a second account with additional storage, so customers don’t need to delete old items in their Outlook mailbox.
The difference between Archive and Mailbox Archive:
The difference between Archive and Mailbox Archive is that you can search and filter your emails in Archive from the Inbox and it does not supply your account with additional storage space. Online Archive, with its own folder structure, cannot be searched from the Inbox but does provide additional storage space.
Mailbox Archive features:
- Unique archive policy — by default, messages older than 2 years are moved to the Online Archive.
- 1.5 TB of additional storage space.
How to enable Mailbox Archive:
- Go to your Exchange Admin Center.
- Click on the menu icon in the top left. (1)
- Click “Recipients” on the left menu to reveal more options. (2)
- Select “Mailboxes” from the revealed options. (3)
- Click the display name of the mailbox for which Online Archive is required. (4)
- Click “Others” in the flyout pane. (5)
- Then click “Manage mailbox archive.” (6)
- Toggle “On” the Mailbox archive.
- Then click the “Save” button.
The Online Archive may take a few minutes to appear turned on. Once enabled, it will display as below:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How do I get Outlook to show all mail?
To get Outlook to show all mail, go to “File” > “Account Settings” >“Account Name & Sync Settings.” Then Check the “Cached Exchange Mode” box and drag the Sync slider all the way to the right.
How far back will Outlook search?
Outlook can show all your mails by setting the Sync slider in “Account Name & Sync Settings” to “All.” In Outlook 2016, the date ranges for mail display include 3 days, 1 week, 2 weeks, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, 2 years, 3 years, 5 years, and “All.”
When Outlook only displays emails newer than 12 months, it usually means that the “Cached Exchange Mode” or “Mail to keep offline” setting is configured to “1 year.” To fix the problem, you can go to “File” > “Account Settings” >”Account Name & Sync Settings.” Then drag the Sync slider to a date above 1 year. Finally, click “Next” and “Done” to save the changes.
Thank you for reading.